Issue 15 / 2015's Most Stylish Hotels In India

2015’s Most Stylish Hotels In India

Aug 28, 2015

From the swankiest new properties in India’s largest metros to two equally luxurious visions in smaller cities, these are the hottest Indian hotel launches of 2015.

The Oberoi Udaivilas in Udaipur (pictured above) recently completed a decade on Travel + Leisure magazine's list of top 100 hotels in the world, and readers voted it number one for 2015. The country’s booming luxury hotel sector took off long before the transatlantic elevation of India as much more than a backpacking destination. From cosmopolitan opulence to luxury under the stars, here are the top four luxury hotel launches in India this year.


JW Marriott, Mumbai Sahar

The second JW Marriott property in Mumbai scores a slam dunk on location, just one kilometer from the international airport. The moment you walk into the lobby of the JW Marriott Sahar the gorgeous gold and white interiors and the signature discreet seating for privacy draw you in. With 585 intimate rooms (all suites; there’s no lower category) and 56,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor convention space, the hotel offers 11 well-appointed meeting rooms with state-of-the-art conferencing facilities. But for regulars to its iconic Juhu property (where you’re likely to bump into more than your fair share of Bollywood celebrities) the heart of the hotel’s socializing scene is the Sunday brunch at JW Café. The open bar, live food stations and alfresco dining area, provide the perfect setting for a lazy feast for jet-setting gourmets.

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From the Andhra fish curry, dalcha kebab and a succulent Australian lamb leg to the Thai curry, a near-perfect Arabic mezze and hamachi nigiri tuna, there’s a world of delicious temptations to dig into. They also boast one of the largest dessert stations in the city, with a particularly lust-worthy lemon cheesecake.

One of the most low-profile openings this year, the homegrown hotel brand’s new plush and stately resort is located at Mewat, near the IT hub Manesar in Gurgaon. You get the feeling that you're not too far from Delhi, and one look at the resplendent property is enough to send even the most world-weary traveller into raptures. With 300 acres overlooking the Aravallis, there’s a 27-hole Jack Nicklaus golf course, a yoga pavilion and numerous walking trails to keep you healthy. Once indoors, the presidential villas and deluxe suites are named after ancient cities and Indian dynasties. All suites work as home units with four separate rooms and sit out areas with private or semi-private swimming pools. Add a personal butler and a long lazy session of R&R at Kaya Kalp: The Royal Spa and the jet lag will be gone before you can say Aum.

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The food is excellent throughout and the restaurants are wonderfully atmospheric. The India Room serves classic European cuisines with a twist (the cheese soufflé is to die for), the Apas Promenade celebrates the Terra Madre community’s slow food movement with local Mewati barbeques at night and the Peacock Bar spins cocktails based on molecular mixology along with fine malts and exotic champagnes from across the globe. A huge hit for the homegrown hotel brand!
On the heels of its decadent properties in Udaipur and Jaipur, Bangkok-based Lebua Hotels and Resorts launched a magical new destination this year at Amer Fort on the outskirts of the Pink City. Lebua Lodge at Amer catapults the rustic glamour of the 16th century snaking fortress walls to set up a line of luxury tents as a contemporary take on traditional Indian nomadic-style residences, with large bay windows, red stone, canvas and wood interiors and picturesque pavilions leading out to landscaped private gardens.

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The La Terre Spa, by the stunning black pool, offers pampering L’Occitane treatments, and the chef at Toran restaurant puts a creative spin on traditional Indian cuisine. The property is at its most spectacular at night, like an oasis glittering in the desert, particularly during luxury bonfire dinners with candle-lit pathways, low armchairs, rose petals and impeccable service.
The Starwood group’s 44th hotel in India launched in July of this year in the historic southern capital of Hyderabad. Conveniently located at the youthful IT hub of Gachibowli, the property is ideal for both business and leisure travellers. Bringing in tennis legends Martina Navratilova and Sania Mirza for a master class during the launch under the Starwood Preferred Guest program, the crown jewel of the Nizam empire has more than a few aces up its sleeve.

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The Sheraton Fitness Centre and Spa are great de-stressers and a few laps in the pool will get you revved up for a meal. Azia, the Pan Asian restaurant has created a buzz amongst guests. Post-dusk, head up to the rooftop bar Chimes for a tipple and a dazzling panoramic view of the city.
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Aparna Pednekar


 Aparna is an India - based travel writer for leading lifestyle and fashion publications. She's also a gemologist and jewelry designer. New cities, new food, cats, dogs, snakes, hours of walking and driving fuel her incurable ADD.


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